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Softball Canada – Santo Domingo, D.R. – The Canadian Men’s National Team improved its record to 4-0 with an 8-1 win over the Bahamas and a 2-1 win over Argentina at the X Pan American Men’s Softball Championship. Kyle Cowick (Sooke, B.C.) led Canada to the win over the Bahamas with a pair of homeruns and five runs batted in, while the second game featured a great pitcher’s duel between Canada’s Devon McCullough (Saskatoon, Sask.) and Argentina’s Maximiliano Montero before Canada took advantage of a pair of costly mistakes in the top of the seventh to steal the win.
 
Against the Bahamas, Canada got on the board quickly as Kris Walushka(Victoria, B.C.) doubled over the center fielder and later scored on a single to center by Cowick in the top of the first. The following inning, Blake Underwood(Port Elgin, Ont.) reached on an error and later scored on a passed ball. Walushka hit a run-scoring single to left, and later scored on a two-run shot by Cowick to straightaway centerfield as Canada built a 6-0 lead. Canada left the bases loaded in the third after two walks and a single, while pitcher Patrick Burns (Saskatoon, Sask.) held the Bahamas off the scoreboard through three innings.
 
Cowick hit a two-run homerun to center in the top of the fourth, and the Bahamas were able to break the shutout in the bottom of the frame when the leadoff batter walked, advanced to second on a passed ball and scored on an error on a slow roller to second that was thrown over the first baseman. The Bahamas started the bottom half of the fifth with a pair of singles but was unable to score to extend the game as Canada won on the run-ahead rule.
 
Box Score: Canada 8 vs. Bahamas 1
 
Cowick had a pair of homeruns and drove in five runs, while Walushka went four-for-four and drove in one. Burns and Ty Sebastian (Brussels, Ont.) each chipped in with a hit for Canada. Burns held the Bahamas without a hit over the first three innings, walking only one batter and striking out five. Tyler Randerson (New Hamburg, Ont.) allowed one unearned run on two hits and struck out four in two innings of relief.
 
In the battle for first place in the division with Argentina, Canada put the pressure on in the top of the second by getting a pair of singles but Montero struck out three batters to leave the two runners stranded on base. In the bottom of the frame, Argentina also put two runners on base on a walk and a single with the runners advancing to second and third, but McCullough shut things down by inducing a pop out to shortstop and notching a strikeout.
 
Both pitchers made quick work through the middle innings until Argentina was able to open the scoring with a run off McCullough in the bottom of the sixth. Teo Migliavacca led off with a single up the middle, advanced to second on a passed ball and to third on a bunt single to the pitcher’s left. After the runner on first stole second, McCullough got two big outs on a ground out to first and a strikeout before issuing an intentional walk, but Migliavacca ended up scoring on a passed ball as Argentina took a late 1-0 lead.
 
Jason Hill (St. John’s, N.L.) led off the top of the seventh with a single for Canada, and moved up to second when the next batter lined out hard to third and the throw to first for a potential double play got by the first baseman. After a strikeout for the second out, Kyle Ezekiel (Holyrood, N.L.) came up huge by hitting a double inside the left field line to score pinch runner Jeremy O’Reilly (Placentia, N.L.) from second to tie the game. Ben Wideman (Fergus, Ont.) then hit a roller to shortstop that was cut off by the third baseman, who’s throw was off line and hit Wideman at first on the throwing error allowing Ezekiel to score and give Canada the 2-1 lead. Ryan French (Cambridge, Ont.) came on in relief of McCullough in the bottom of the seventh and issued a leadoff walk, but got a fly ball to center, a fielder’s choice to second and catcher Bryan Abrey (Richmond, B.C.) caught the potential tying run stealing at second to end the game.
 
Box Score: Canada 2 vs. Argentina 1
 
McCullough ended up allowing one run on four hits and struck out 10 batters in six innings of work while French registered the save. Ezekiel delivered the key two-out hit in the top of the seventh to tie the game and scored the winning run on an error. Walushka, Hill, Abrey and Wideman each registered hits for the red and white.
 
Tuesday’s schedule will see Canada play another doubleheader, taking on Panama (1-2) at 4:30pm EDT followed by Guatemala (3-1) at 7:00pm EDT. Live webstreaming is available at https://www.internetv.tv/index.php?route=itv2017/product&product_id=1271.

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For more information, please contact:

Gilles LeBlanc
Manager – Marketing & Communications
Softball Canada
p: (613) 523-3386 ext. 3105 | m: (613) 795-1996
w: www.softball.ca | e: gleblanc@softball.ca